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African creatives named in New York Festivals Advertising Awards grand jury

The New York Festivals Advertising Awards' (NYFA) 2022 grand jury includes chief creative officers, executive creative directors, art directors, copywriters, executive producers, social media, and public relations pros from 56 countries, including Africa.
Source: Supplied ©New York Festivals Advertising Awards
Source: Supplied ©New York Festivals Advertising Awards

African representatives hail from South Africa, Nigeria, Ghana and Morocco.

South Africa

  • Dane Alexander, creative director - ninety9cents
  • Joshua de Kock - creative director, Ryan McFadyen, founder and head, Talia O’Brien, creative lead - Have You Heard
  • Marcelle du Plessis, creative director - TBWA/Hunt/Lascaris
  • Peter Little, executive creative director - Ogilvy Johannesburg
  • Sandhya Mathura, senior copywriter - Ogilvy Cape Town
  • Lubabalo Mtati, creative director - M&C Saatchi & Abel
  • Leigh-Anne Salonika, founder – Only Kind
  • Aviv Weil, head of creative shop - Meta
  • Gavin Whitfield, executive creative – Leagas Delaney
  • Juliet Honey, creative director - Freelancer


  • Kunle Akoleowo, creative director – Independent
  • Omayemi Arawore, co-Founder/executive Director - Beyond The Visual
  • Abisola Anthonio, design lead - Loose Media
  • Jolomi Awala, creative director - Ogilvy Africa
  • Oyindamola Fakile, brand and marketing communications - Independent
  • Duzie Ikwuegbu, creative director - DDB Lagos
  • Ayotunde Ishola, creative director – TheVisualAdvocates


  • Tobi Beckley Williams, head of creative strategy - Insel Communications


  • Samira Rafi, executive creative director - Boomerang Communication

“New York Festivals is honoured to have these respected creatives share their industry experience on the 2022 Grand Jury,” says Lauren Murray, associate executive director, New York Festivals.

"With more than 300+ industry innovators on board to date, 2022’s jury panel represents a diverse range of creative talent who will lend their perspective to determine the 2022 Advertising Awards Shortlist,” adds Murray

New Creative Ambassador Program

African creatives named in New York Festivals Advertising Awards grand jury
This year NYF debuts its new Creative Ambassador Program, partnering with Dotun Bello, senior copywriter for TBWA\Chiat\Day as its first ambassador.

The initiative, launched by Murray, provides an opportunity for NYF to shine the spotlight on emerging and established talent represented by the Program. NYF’s Ambassadors will be showcased via NYF’s platforms during the competition and serve on the 2022 Grand Jury.

“NYFA’s Ambassadors will be our eyes and ears within the representative’s country. Working together with our team, they will introduce us to local creatives and agencies, and will be sharing exceptional creative work represented by their country.

“We look forward to spreading the word about this ground-breaking work through video interviews and social media posts, as well as offering each person featured a spot on our Grand Jury,” explains Murray.

She adds that they are ecstatic to have Dotun Bello as the first Ambassador for this program “as we go across the globe with him to highlight the creatives in Nigeria who are making a mark on the industry”.

A platform for smaller advertising communities

Bello says he was thrilled “beyond belief” when New York Festivals agreed to partner with me and created the Ambassador Program. “This gives folks with ties to smaller advertising communities the platform they need to show off their work and creativity,” he says.

A Brooklyn-based Nigerian creative, Bello began his advertising career in Lagos, Nigeria before making his way to the US in 2015. His creative career spans seven plus years and has created campaigns for such prestigious brands as Guinness, Bharti-Airtel, BMW, Xfinity, Louis XIII, Samsung, YouTube and many more.

Highlighting the best

“Our industry has a knack for celebrating work that “rises to the top” without acknowledging that many smaller advertising communities don’t have equal opportunity to be highlighted,” says Bello.

“There are many systemic rungs in place that make it near impossible for advertising professionals in smaller markets like Lagos to be seen and celebrated,” explains Bello.

“The goal is to highlight the best out of a creative industry that is truly ready to meet the rest of the world.

“I look to the music industry and the global successes of folks like Burna and Tems and I hope one day we come to appreciate that creativity can truly be found everywhere and doesn't have to look like anything we've seen before to be valued," he adds.

The New York Festivals Advertising Awards competition receives entries from more than 60 countries and are judged by more than 400 members of NYF’s Executive Jury and Grand Jury, who collectively cast their votes to select the year’s trophy-winning work.

The 2022 Executive Jury and Grand Jury panel selection process is in progress. Executive Jury sessions will convene in June. The deadline to enter the 2022 New York Festivals Advertising Awards is 1 April 2022.

You can find more information on categories, rules and regulations or to review the 2022 entry guide here.

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